At Broadway House for Continuing Care, our goal is to empower residents with the tools they need to resume living independently, with dignity. Medical Case Manager Maria Lorenzo was part of the team supporting two longtime residents who recently began their lives anew in the community.
As soon as a resident arrives at Broadway House, a comprehensive medical and support team begins working on a plan of action to restore their health and provide a wide range of personalized services. Maria’s role is critical for long-term success: Arranging for housing, entitlements like Social Security, and potential family support, as well as medical and mental health care that may be needed after discharge. “It takes a lot of coordination when a resident is returned to the community,” she explains. Yet, it’s worth every bit of the effort—read on to see why.
Since arriving at Broadway House, Christine had one dream: To return home to Connecticut and live with her mother. That dream became a reality on July 11, when Christine’s mother and brother picked her up to start her new life.
Christine, whose story was initially featured in Broadway House’s holiday appeal last winter, had arrived at Broadway House in rough shape. The death of her fiancé had sent her into a downward spiral and years of substance abuse, homelessness, and uncontrolled HIV had taken their toll. Entering hospice care, Christine wanted to die. Yet, the professionals at Broadway House refused to give up on her. Christine benefited from a full range of services including expert medical care and medication management, intensive substance abuse counseling, social services, and emotional support from trained mental health professionals. Maria also helped to reconnect Christine with her family in Connecticut, working directly with them to plan for her discharge.
It took a lot of support from an interdisciplinary team, and by last spring, Christine’s HIV lab levels were stable. She had also developed the ability to handle the day-to-day tasks of caring for herself and living independently. Reflecting on her experiences at Broadway House—and the new life she is starting with her family—Christine says, “I am grateful for all the care I received while I was here. Broadway House saved my life.”
Doreen is proud of her new senior apartment in Newark—and all of the hard work she put in to get there. Several years ago, Doreen found herself living on the streets in South Jersey, alone and addicted to drugs. Her worried son called police, and after a month-long hospital stay, Doreen arrived at Broadway House.
While here, she received the comprehensive medical care and behavioral support she needed to beat her drug addiction and regain control of her life. Surrounded by support, Doreen—who shared her story in this newsletter last fall—benefited from excellent mental health and infectious disease care. Maria also arranged for the Newark native to attend a methadone clinic, qualify for Social Security and additional medical insurance, and eventually, to move into her new apartment.
When the big day arrived on June 29, Doreen was “super psyched about leaving.” Her comfortable apartment is fully furnished and was stocked with a week’s worth of groceries. She now also qualifies for Meals on Wheels to ensure she continues to receive proper nutrition. Doreen’s message to Maria is simple, yet a powerful testament to Broadway House: “Thank you for helping and guiding me.”